DURHAM Dynamos hopes of reaching the T20 quarter-finals suffered a massive blow last night as they lost to Warwickshire Bears on the final ball of the game.
A spirited fightback gave the Dynamos the chance of rescuing victory from the jaws of defeat.
But once again, Geoff Cook’s men had too few runs on the board to defend, and the hosts, needing two to win from the final delivery, got home courtesy of a four from Chris Woakes.
The defeat leaves Durham’s hopes of progressing from the T20 North group in the balance.
Fourth-placed Dynamos are above Lancashire Lightning on run rate, with both sides on 14 points, and a point behind third-placed Worcestershire.
However, Lancs have two games in hand – away to Northamptonshire Steelbacks tonight and at home to Warwickshire tomorrow.
Should the Lightning fail to take anything from their three remaining games, which seems highly unlikely, then sixth-placed Yorkshire could still pip Durham.
The Tykes are just a point behind on 13, and face a trip to Derby for their final game on Friday.
All this mean’s that Durham’s fate is no longer in their own hands and even a win at home to bottom of the table Northamptonshire on Thursday, may not be enough.
Things looked ominous when Durham didn’t get off to the best of starts last night.
Quick dismissals of Gordon Muchall for just one run, Phil Mustard (11) and Ian Blackwell (6) saw the visitors floundering on 33-3.
As so many times this season, it looked as though skipper Dale Benkenstein had come to the rescue.
Benkenstein’s unbeaten 50 from 32 balls finally gave the away side some impetus, and an undefeated 31 from 22 deliveries by Gareth Breese helped them post 145-5 from their 20 overs.
With the hosts having failed to reach 140 in their three previous completed innings, it seemed like the total set might just be enough.
But Neil Carter with 38 from 36 balls and Darren Maddy (40) had other ideas.
Scott Borthwick then gave his side a glimmer of hope, with five needed from the last over he claimed the wickets of Jim Troughton and Keith Barker, second and fifth ball respectively.
But unfortunately for the spinner and his team-mates the great escape couldn’t be completed as Woakes found the boundary from the final delivery to seal a home win.